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Music

Sex Pistols to reissue ‘God Save The Queen’ for Jubilee celebrations

Next month, Queen Elizabeth II will celebrate her Platinum Jubilee after spending 70 years on the throne. Those six decades saw British culture change like never before, with a burgeoning counter-cultural movement throughout the 1960s that morphed into the noisy and aggressive punk movement in the 1970s. Never before had music been such a dominating force behind our culture. 

While they didn’t establish punk, the Sex Pistols definitely epitomised the movement more than any other group during the period. They looked like reprobates, sounded like reprobates and what they lacked in musical talent, they made up for in charisma and anarchist fury. 

The political drive behind Johnny Rotten’s lyrics was often caught up in pointing fingers at the oppressive rulers of the world. None of the band’s hits made such a statement as 1977’s ‘God Save The Queen’.

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News has just come out detailing the Sex Pistols’ plans to re-release the classic protest single on May 27th just in time for the Queen’s big day. 

The track was originally released during the Queen’s Silver Jubilee and was promptly banned by the BBC for its anti-monarchy slant. It’s safe to say the Queen wasn’t amused in the slightest. 

The single reached number one on the UK’s NME chart but fell short of the top spot at number two on the Official UK Singles chart, leading to accusations that the song was purposely kept from the top spot. For the only time in chart history, the track was listed as a blank to avoid offence to the establishment. 4,000 copies of the Virgin re-release will be on sale to fans.

In 1977, the Sex Pistols were dropped by their record label A&M in the midst of controversy after just six days of being in partnership. Subsequently, the label destroyed 25,000 copies of the record, making the handful of remaining copies ultra-rare collectables. In honour of this, only 1,977 copies of the A&M re-release will be available for sale.

Both of the re-release versions recreate the original artwork. The A&M edition features the generic company sleeve and is pressed on silver/platinum vinyl, while the Virgin single sports the iconic Sex Pistols artwork designed by Jamie Reid.

The B-sides also reflect the original releases with ‘No Feeling’ for A&M and ‘Did You No Wrong’ for Virgin.

Stream the iconic ‘God Save The Queen’ by the Sex Pistols below.